The happy path

If all is going well with your saltwater swimming pool you will still need to regularly add:

  1. water (if hot/dry conditions lower the level)
  2. salt (irregularly, perhaps a few bags over summer)
  3. hydrochloric acid (approx a cup per weak)
  4. uric acid (

And you will need to regularly:

  1. empty the baskets (1-7 days)
  2. test the pool (1-7 days)
  3. backwash the filter (monthly)
  4. rinse the filter (when backwashing)
  5. de-calcify the chlorinator (1-3 months)
  6. Top up the pool (if too low due to evaporation of back wash)
  7. add salt (if salt levels are low: irregular)

And vacuum the pool (if you don't have an automated vaccuum or robot butler)


todo Diagram of system

You will need to perform a lot more maintenance in summer than winter.

And when things go wrong you may need to add:

  1. chlorine (aka shock)
  2. alkaline (aka buffer)
  3. phosphate remover (aka starver)
  4. (aka clarifier)
  5. Flocculant
  6. Enzymes (remove oils from surface)


You've left the chlorinator off for an extended period of time

Obviously get the chlorinator working again. But to get the chlorine level back up you need to add chlorine manually. (You could attempt just running the chlorinator continuously, but you'll wear out your system. Kick start it with some chlorinator.)

Black spotty algae begins to form